Gators Face Another Dual-Threat in Presley

Three of Florida's four losses this season have come against teams with dual-threat quarterbacks, and they'll be tested with another one Saturday against Appalachian State. DeAndre Presley doesn't have ideal size for quarterback but his ability to create plays with his feet will keep the Florida defense on its toes Saturday.

"He's a challenge as a quarterback because he can do things on his own," Florida defensive coordinator Teryl Austin said. "He can make something out of nothing."

After facing dual threat quarterbacks the caliber of South Carolina's Stephen Garcia and USF's B.J. Daniels, it would be easy to assume Presley would be a step down. However, his athleticism doesn't allow that.

Garcia gave the Florida defense problems while running read plays in the backfield with running back Marcus Lattimore, and Daniels caused issues when the play broke down, creating something out of nothing.

Presley has a little bit of both.

"He's right up there with the best of them," Austin said. "The thing he doesn't have is the size, but he makes up for it with lots of quickness and speed. That's what makes him tough to defend."

Presley's throwing ability won't let Florida sit an extra safety in the box to prevent his chances to run. They'll sneak Ahmad Black near the line of scrimmage to keep him honest, but it will happen sparingly.

Black will be playing his final game in The Swamp on Saturday. He wasn't highly recruited out of high school, and the Gators lined him up at cornerback when he first came to campus in 2007. They moved him to safety because he didn't have the speed to stay with elite receivers.

At safety, he has become one of the best tacklers in the SEC. Austin's NFL pedigree helped him realize that Black won't be a guy that puts on a show at the combine, but his friends in the NFL have already talked about how impressive he is on film.

"He's not going to pass the height, weight, speed and look tests, but when you put on that film, I know that a lot of guys I know say that he is a football player," Austin said. "That's how we feel."

The injury report for the Florida defense has some new members this week. Jon Bostic has been limited in practice with a bruised sternum he suffered against Vanderbilt. A.J. Jones has a hamstring issue and "has not done much" this week in practice. Jaye Howard has practiced at full speed, according to Austin.

Bostic's level of play has been up and down throughout the season. Austin said he has "everything you need in a linebacker," but he is yet to put together a complete game.

"It's really consistency," Austin said. "He's inconsistent as a player. You get that learning how to do the same things and in a routine. Once he does that and has that good game, that's when he'll take off."

After a great start, the Florida secondary's production has slowed. Austin decided to play a freshman, Cody Riggs, at cornerback to get the jumpstart the unit needed.

He has learned on the fly, but his potential is easy to see.

"He's getting better every week," Austin said. "He's not the biggest guy, but he competes hard. We're really pleased with how he developed."

Riggs is only 5-9 at corner, but he uses technique and his understanding of the cornerback position to make up for it.

"The one thing he does is he's a competitor," Austin said. "He's got really good speed and change of direction. He's got to use that to his advantage. He can use his quickness and speed to his advantage. When he puts his foot in the ground, he can go."

Austin also said Chris Martin, who has to sit out this year after transferring from Cal, is "a big, physical kid." Martin is splitting time at linebacker and defensive end, and Austin said no decision would be made on his future until the spring.
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